Tuesday, December 8, 2020

Hand Tool Workbench Progress

 Very little progress over the last two days. I had yesterday evening free; however, I hadn't slept well the night before so I didn't get up off the couch to do anything in the shop. Tonight I had a half an hour so I dashed down and glued two of the long blocks together.

And yes, I used enough clamps this time that I shouldn't have to worry about gaps. If there are any it'll probably be because the boards weren't jointed perfectly flat. I did tune my jointer a number of years ago to make sure it was planing boards flat but I haven't checked in a few years to confirm it's still flat. Boards have been mostly flat enough for me.

Speaking of my planer, it got a bad chip in the blades a number of years ago. Long enough ago that I don't remember how it happened. It must have been something bad to put through the planer because it also dented the cast iron infeed table. Because of this chip in the blades my planer leaves a small ridge on everything that goes through it. 

Normally I just follow the normal flattening procedure, joint one face, send through the planer until the opposite side is flat. Then I'll send the jointed face through the planer to clean up the jointed face. In this case I didn't want to send the blocks through the planer any more often than I had to. They were heavy enough and awkward enough I didn't want to risk breaking something. Instead I just cleaned up those faces with a sanding block and some 120 grit sandpaper.

Back to this glue up, I was happy that I got a good squeeze out without having buckets of glue dripping to the floor. 

The lower stress of only needing to glue two boards together was also quite nice. I really should have done the first set that way. Glued the boards into pairs, then the pairs into quads, then this step gluing them into sets of eight. As Yogi Bera always said, hindsight is 50-50. (Actually I don't think Yogi Bera ever said that but it is certainly the kind of thing he would have said.)

I got the one glue up clamped (see above picture) then I needed to clean up and get ready to play Sentinels of the Multiverse with some friends. After getting cleaned up I did go scrape the glue from the surface. Looking pretty good so far.

I might duck downstairs tonight after we're done or more likely tomorrow morning. 

The other thing I've been pondering is how I am going to get these double blocks through the planer. If it was not Covid I'd consider asking a strong friend to come over and help out. Since it is Covid, that's a non-starter. I thought about building in-feed and out-feed tables but that'd be a lot of work. I think what would be smarter would be to build a temporary planer stand that put the planer at the right height to use my existing benches. That decided I went and found some scrap 2x4 that I think probably came from demoing the back wall in my workshop for the dust collector closet. I could probably go find out but I don't care. They're some pretty ugly 2x4s but they'll work to make a one-use stand.

Maybe tomorrow if I get sleep tonight!